By Robert Fenn
Social Securityâ€™s homepage has a brand new look. In June, we launched a new home page at www.socialsecurity.gov.
The new look is more welcoming and user-friendly; it follows the standard for design principles in the industry by reducing clutter, improving navigation, making better use of graphics, reducing the need to scroll down and prioritizing items on the page.
The new page focuses on the primary reasons people contact Social Security. We put those items front and center. The three main topics that take up the prime real estate are:
o Filing for retirement benefits;
o Applying for disability benefits; and
o Requesting a Social Security card.
Meanwhile, major program topics run along the top of the page â€” Retire-ment, Survivors, Disability, Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and Medicare. The left side of the home page addresses â€œWhat you can do online.â€ And thatâ€™s where youâ€™re also linked to Your Social Security Earnings Statement, forms and publications and more.
On the right side of the page, youâ€™ll be able to search the site, get answers to frequently asked questions and find information for specific groups or organizations on the Web site. Social Security news rounds out the page.
For the first time, people also can watch a brief video greeting on the site delivered by one of our agency employees.
While the look of our home page has changed, the Web addresses have not. Favorite sites that you and other frequent visitors have bookmarked will not change.
If you havenâ€™t recently been to the Web site, www.socialsecurity.gov, youâ€™ll be pleased and surprised at all the things you can do. Thereâ€™s something there for everyone. You can save yourself a trip to an office by using the Web site.
There you can apply for retirement or disability benefits. You also can find out the exact documents you need to bring into our offices if you need a replacement card.
Check out our new home page now and see how easy it is to use at www.socialsecurity.gov.
Have a Social Security question? Send it to my attention at email@example.com.
Fenn is a Social Security Public Affairs Specialist.